April has brought another fantastic selection of picture books for pre-schoolers and primary schoolers, with a couple of special books about mums, just in time for Mother’s Day. Enjoy the April 2019 Children’s Book Roundup!
Disclosure – these books were provided to Blog of Dad free of charge for the April 2019 Children’s Book Roundup. For further information, please visit my disclosure statement.
We’re Stuck! – Sue deGennaro
Every morning, like clockwork, the lift of Building 24 fills. Everyone is in a rush – places to be, things to do. At most a simple head nod to acknowledge their fellow lift riders. But on this day, full of its passengers, the lift stops and does not start again. Everyone is in a tizz, they can’t be late! Little turtle cries. It’s his birthday today.
Before long the lift is abuzz with collaboration and community spirit. Plastic gloves from the doctor become balloons. A newspaper is fashioned in to party hats. Pelican’s lunch becomes party food. No-one even notices how much time has passed.
And in Building 24, on the busy side of town, nothing was ever the same again.
The Wall in the Middle of the Book – Jon Agee
A young knight sure is glad there is a wall in the middle of the book. It protects him from all the dangers on the other side, like an angry tiger, a giant rhino and especially the ogre, who surely wants to eat him up. Buy while he is so focused on the dangers on the other side of the wall, the knight isn’t paying attention to what is happening on his side! When he finally realises the water is almost over his head, who will help him?
B is for Baby – Atinuke and Angela Brooksbank
A beautifully illustrated picture book, this book tells of a little boy’s bicycle adventure to see his Baba, and his baby sister inadvertently coming along for the ride. Told entirely in the format “B is for…”, in addition to being a simply beautiful and enjoyable story in its own right, it is also perfect for preschoolers learning and consolidating recognition of the letter ‘b’ and its sound.
Mr Posey’s New Glasses – Ted Kooser and Daniel Duncan
Everything seemed dull and boring to Mr Posey. Everywhere he looked, everything was the same and none of it was interesting. Perhaps a trip to the Cheer Up Thrift Shop with his energetic young neighbour to buy some new glasses will help. Inside the thrift shop Mr Posey tries on lots of different glasses. Star-shaped glasses that show only the night sky, tortoise-shell frames that send him among the fish at the bottom of the ocean, glasses with perfectly round lenses that make the world swirl like water going down the drain. None of them were right. So what does Andy suggest that finally helps Mr Posey see the world with fresh eyes?
Engaging and enthralling from start to finish, with illustrations that draw you in to the magic, Mt Posey’s New Glasses is a wonderful story about seeing the world anew.
The Ultimate Animal Counting Book – Jennifer Cousins
This is no ordinary animal counting book! From one to one hundred (by ones) this book is illustrated with animals, many unusual. There are 9 tigers and 21 giant pandas, but also 32 gerenuks and 59 cherrotains. Each page contains interesting animal facts. Did you know goats have rectangular pupils? And how’s this for a fun fact: Male lemurs get in stink-fights where they rub their tails in their own scents and shake them at their opponents.
This is one book I’m sure our pre-schooler will come back to again and again. Both by herself, to look at the animals and count them, as well as with us, to hear all the animal facts.
Cats and Robbers – Russell Ayto
Three hapless robbers hadn’t counted on two clever cats. The result? One robbery gone wrong!
A fun and funny tale.
One Tree – Christopher Cheng and Bruce Whatley
A beautiful and uplifting story about the importance of the natural environment for our sense of well-being.
One tall tree on the mountain once marked Grandfather’s farm. Now there is a busy city and Grandfather’s lives in an apartment with family. Once a remarkable storyteller, now he stays silent. One day the boy spots a little plant growing through the crack in the path at the market. It won’t last long with so many rushing feet, thinks the boy. He wraps it up and takes it home. Grandfather will know what to do. Soon, one tiny plant on their balcony becomes many. And soon, one green balcony becomes many. Grandfather’s storytelling returns.
Illustrated with what looks like linoprints, I was interested to learn they were all created digitally. It seemed somehow profoundly relevant to me that what looks to have been created from an old technique and typically natural materials, was created with no physical materials in a distinctly modern way.
With Mother’s Day around the corner, there has been a selection of fun books released to celebrate Mums.
Mum For Sale – Zanni Louise and Philip Bunting
Cheeky Errol the penguin is back. This time his mum is taking on the phone. For ages. Talk, talk, talk! So Errol takes matters in to his own hands. “Mum for sale. Make offer.”, Says his sign. Finally a good offer comes along: a jar of jelly beans. Buy when the jar proves too difficult to open, it may just be time to hatch a plan to bring mum back! And maybe even share the jelly beans with her!
Thanks, Mum! – Matt Cosgrove
Is there anything mums can’t do?
Can’t find your shoe? Taken a tumble? Lost? Hungry? Just call “Mum!”
A comical take on the reasons to be thankful to our mums.
For the primary schoolers:
Cook’s Cook. The Cool Who Cooked for Captain Cook – Gavin Bishop
John Thompson was the ship’s cook when Captain James Cook and his 94 crew set sail for his famous voyage to the South Pacific in 1768. In Cook’s Cook, Thompson tells the story of shipboard life and exotic places, makes friends with famous botanist Joseph Banks and shares some of his recipes, including shark steaks and albatross stew. He only had one hand, but it only takes one hand to stir the porridge! It all makes for an enthralling and unique perspective on this famous journey.
A Cat Called Trim – Corinne Fenton and Craig Smith
A Cat Called Trim is the true story of the courageous cat who sailed with Matthew Flinders on his voyages to map the coastline of Australia and beyond. This picture book captures the rollicking adventures of Trim, and the remarkable relationship between Flinders and Trim magnificently. Primary school children are sure to enjoy reading this charmingly illustrated book of Trim’s take on this part of history.
Amazing Evolution – The Journey of Life – Anna Clayborne and Wesley Robins
Beautifully laid out with stunning illustrations, Amazing Evolution explores what evolution is, how it works and who discovered it’s secrets. From the first simple lifeforms that formed on Earth 3.8 billion years ago, to the talking apes (humans) that inhabit Earth today, this book has it beautifully and engagingly covered. Explore how fossils inform us about past living things, Darwin’s theory of natural selection, how eyes evolved and much more.